Oxford MailDemand for action on sewage (From Oxford Mail)

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Demand for action on sewage

Oxford Mail: Phil Hayward Phil Hayward

Families fed up with sewage flooding their estate are demanding urgent action to tackle the problem.

Homeowners in Derwent Avenue, on Didcot's Ladygrove estate, criticised Thames Water's plans to sort out the problem next year.

Heavy rain overloaded drains and flooded the road for the third time in a year recently.

Residents were forced to wade through two feet of flood water to get in and out of their roads.

Thames Water said it hoped to start "implementing solutions" in early 2009 now that it had completed a three-month engineering study.

Plans to alleviate the problems would be drawn up over the coming months, a company spokesman said.

But Amanda Armstrong, 41, of Derwent Avenue, said: "I think it's disgusting. They need to be making it a priority.

"Sewage is the main problem we have, it's unacceptable and a health and safety issue."

A 39-year-old mother-of-two, who wished to remain anonymous, said she was furious with Thames Water and was considering withholding paying her bill until the problem was sorted. She said: "This has happened about five times in the last two years and it's never happened before. The smell and the stuff floating in it is disgusting.

"They need to sort it now because it's a health issue and it smells for weeks after."

Resident John Buckley said: "It should be a priority and I'm curious about why they think it's not a priority."

Wantage and Didcot MP Ed Vaizey will meet residents next month to discuss the problems.

He said: "It is up to Thames Water to sort this out.

"Waiting until 2009 is completely unacceptable.

"I will be pressing Thames Water for much speedier action."

Ladygrove councillor Phil Hayward said: "We've had enough experience of flooding in Ladygrove and we need to sort the problem out, not put it back."

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